Making recycling worthwhile

TRADING UP: A man collects recyclables for the Re-Trade shop -
TRADING UP: A man collects recyclables for the Re-Trade shop –

While going shopping might be seen as a chore to many, for others choosing what you eat and wear is a luxury they can only dream of.

But now a Port Elizabeth charity project, Re-Trade in Miramar, is making this dream a reality by giving people the chance to exchange recyclables for basic items in their trade shop.

The Re-Trade project was started by Maria Grewar, 25, from Fountain Vineyard Church, who wanted to give the needy knocking on the church’s door more than just food parcels.

“I wanted to empower not enable and this system does that. It gives people the chance to work for what they want and puts them in control of what they get out,” she said.

Every Friday between 9am and 11am people bring in bags of cleaned and sorted recyclables like glass, paper and plastic. These are then assessed and exchanged for credits.

The credits can then be used DO you have a similar story? How are you inspiring Port Elizabeth?

Perhaps you are helping out a neighbour, paying the way of a child other than your own through school or taking care of someone in your community.

We want to hear, and tell, your inspiring stories.

E-mail or send them to us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram by posting or tweeting your stories and pictures with the hashtag #Inspiremandelabay at a shop set up by the church to buy whatever they need.

“It is only basic items like tinned food, toiletries and blankets, but it’s the ability to choose that makes all the difference,” Grewar said.

The project is open to anyone who wants to join in, from the destitute to those just down on their luck.

The group has been running since March, with almost three tons of recyclables being collected weekly.

“We also have a recycling dropoff point where the community can drop off their recycling.

“The funds from our recycling projects are used to buy stock for our store. It works in a cycle,” she said.

-Eleanor Douglas-Meyers 

Inspire Mandela Bay

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